General Discussion

To get a laptop, or not to get a laptop.
crazyninny at 7:36PM, April 26, 2008
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Ah, the great question that ponders us students wishing to go to college. Like I haven't already terriozied the internet with my supreme cult of evilness, I wish to do it better! Faster! And when ever I feel like it!!!

Pretty much, I'm tierd of using the family computer. I think its time for the Ninny to get her own laptop.

But, I have next to no experience on laptops, so I was woundering if any of the laptop users of DD can give me any pointers or such? I'm thinking about getting a Dell laptop, becuase its the only one I can afford. @_@ But, I looks good to use and such.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:49AM
HippieVan at 9:44PM, April 26, 2008
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I have a dell laptop and I have had no problems with it. I also got it because it was all I could afford, but I absolutely love my laptop.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 12:48PM
gigatwo at 11:12PM, April 26, 2008
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You could get an eeepc if you're just doing just doing web browsing and schoolwork. The screen size is a bit too small for any thing else, but that's just because it's tiny.

Dells are cheap, and if you can do without windows (which is a small fraction of the population) you save like, fifty bucks by getting one with ubuntu pre-installed.
(from $600 to $550)
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:36PM
anonymousposterchild at 11:19PM, April 26, 2008
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If you have to actually run anything, don't get Ubuntu.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 10:53AM
imshard at 11:38PM, April 26, 2008
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I agree. Get a Dell Vostro laptop. Its cheaper than any of their other laptops but its actually a direct clone of their more expensive Inspiron laptop line. The only difference is they paint it black instead of white and market them to businesses instead of home users. (hehe dontcha love insider knowledge?).
Plus you can still get them with XP instead of vista.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 12:58PM
Custard Trout at 2:53AM, April 27, 2008
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Vista > XP
Hey buddy, you should be a Russian Cosmonaut, and here's why.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:00PM
Steely Gaze at 6:28AM, April 27, 2008
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I've got a Windows Vista HP laptop, and while there are problems with it, I do find it easy to use and very helpful. I do my main work on my desktop computer, but my writing, and some occasional gaming (shh, don't tell anyone) can all be done easily from my laptop. My artist actually uses the laptop more than any of our desktop PCs for coloring and the like! (From experience, I don't recommend doing that.) For web surfing, just make sure you've got a good screen.

As for the Vista vs. XP debate…I still like XP more for Windows, but Vista isn't quite as bad as everyone has made out. Not, that is, if you set it up properly.

Either way, if you find you don't like the laptop's keyboard, get yourself a pair of these. From what I hear, they're perfect. ;)
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last edited on July 14, 2011 3:57PM
ozoneocean at 7:36AM, April 27, 2008
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Steely Gaze
Either way, if you find you don't like the laptop's keyboard, get yourself a pair of these. From what I hear, they're perfect. ;)
Oh god lol!
You can look like a tool, type and fondle yourself at the same time: perfect net geek tool :)

Vista is fine. I've used every popular OS heaps for work and play except the Linux flavours. Vista compares as well as any. It looks better than XP and is more secure because of the way it works. But because of the requirements it only works well on newer PCs with more power. Which your laptop is bound to be.

Driver support issues are much less problem now.

OSX looks great, works well, and is secure too, but only on Macs :)
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:31PM
lba at 7:54AM, April 27, 2008
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I'd remember to take into account the computers your prospective school uses too. For me going to MIAD, a mac is the best choice because it's a little easier to sync with the school computers, ( Not saying you can't do it with a PC, but the mac just has an easier time of it. I don't even pretend to know why. ) and I get a discount at the apple store because I'm a MIAD student so it would be about the same price or a little cheaper.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:29PM
gigatwo at 3:21PM, April 27, 2008
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If you have to actually run anything, don't get Ubuntu.

Well, with wine you can get a fair number of Windows programs running. PS CS2 runs seamlessly, but CS3 still has a few bugs to work out. Gaming wise, linux usually isn't the way to go, but most valve games seem to work on wine, and a few other games such as COD4 and WOW work fine. The problem is that it takes effort install them.

Personally, I have a full collection of software that covers what I need. (a 3d modeler, 2 raster editors, a vector editor, a vector animator (confusing, but can produce smoother animations that flash when used right), a font editor, an office suite, a light-weight screen recording program, a video editor (although I have to say it's not that great))…. and no malware (unless you hate linux, in which case you could consider ubuntu to be malware). I never had to pay for any of it, and yet I never had to pirate anything either. I have to say, my boot up times are pretty nice too.

I still dual boot on XP for games, although I hypothetically could run most of my games under linux (remember that effort thing I talked about), but I find myself in ubuntu a lot more.

That being said, linux isn't for everyone. You have to be willing to use a lot of FOSS alternatives for more popular programs, but a lot of them are up to par with their original counterparts (although some admittedly fall short), and free is good, right? Also, not everything works out of the box, which can be a pain (that's what forums are for).

It's probably important to note that it took absolutely no effort to locate and install the programs I mentioned. I simply opened up the add/remove package manager, searched for what I wanted (ex. “screen recorder” ) and clicked install.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:36PM
anonymousposterchild at 5:48PM, April 27, 2008
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gigatwo
anonymousposterchild
If you have to actually run anything, don't get Ubuntu.

Well, with wine you can get a fair number of Windows programs running. PS CS2 runs seamlessly, but CS3 still has a few bugs to work out. Gaming wise, linux usually isn't the way to go, but most valve games seem to work on wine, and a few other games such as COD4 and WOW work fine. The problem is that it takes effort install them.

Personally, I have a full collection of software that covers what I need. (a 3d modeler, 2 raster editors, a vector editor, a vector animator (confusing, but can produce smoother animations that flash when used right), a font editor, an office suite, a light-weight screen recording program, a video editor (although I have to say it's not that great))…. and no malware (unless you hate linux, in which case you could consider ubuntu to be malware). I never had to pay for any of it, and yet I never had to pirate anything either. I have to say, my boot up times are pretty nice too.

I still dual boot on XP for games, although I hypothetically could run most of my games under linux (remember that effort thing I talked about), but I find myself in ubuntu a lot more.

That being said, linux isn't for everyone. You have to be willing to use a lot of FOSS alternatives for more popular programs, but a lot of them are up to par with their original counterparts (although some admittedly fall short), and free is good, right? Also, not everything works out of the box, which can be a pain (that's what forums are for).

It's probably important to note that it took absolutely no effort to locate and install the programs I mentioned. I simply opened up the add/remove package manager, searched for what I wanted (ex. “screen recorder” ) and clicked install.

The problem is that most of the FOSS alternatives are shit, and WINE and Linux are both still SO far from being ready for prime time. And if that 3d modeller you use is blender, I laugh at you sir.

For I am a man who likes real interfaces.
Official DrunkDuck curmudgeon
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:53AM
gigatwo at 6:37PM, April 27, 2008
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Yeah, since you obviously can't do shit with blender.

While blender's interface seems daunting at first, for those that know how to use it, it ends up being much faster than working in maya or 3DS MAX and hardly counter-intuitive. If you really hate modeling with blender, then there's always Wings 3D. If you absolutely hate free alternatives you can get Maya to work NATIVELY in linux.

I'm not entirely against commercial software, but I don't have money. I'm very much against pirating, so I really only use proprietary software when I need it, and when I do, I purchase it legally. FOSS just holds me over for when I'm broke, which is damn near all the time.

As far as linux not being ready for prime time, you may be right. It's probably not suitable for the computer illiterate or die-hard gamers. That being said, it doesn't take a great amount of knowledge to get started, and it does definitely provide for a fully functional desktop OS.

We'll never agree on this matter, there's nothing I can say that'll change your mind, and there's probably nothing that you can say to change my mind, since I'm a fucking OSS zealot. Know this though, from my experience, Linux has just sort of “worked” for me, and it's all I need to get shit done.


last edited on July 14, 2011 12:36PM
anonymousposterchild at 6:45PM, April 27, 2008
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gigatwo
Yeah, since you obviously can't do shit with blender.

While blender's interface seems daunting at first, for those that know how to use it, it ends up being much faster than working in maya or 3DS MAX and hardly counter-intuitive. If you really hate modeling with blender, then there's always Wings 3D. If you absolutely hate free alternatives you can get Maya to work NATIVELY in linux.

I'm not entirely against commercial software, but I don't have money. I'm very much against pirating, so I really only use proprietary software when I need it, and when I do, I purchase it legally. FOSS just holds me over for when I'm broke, which is damn near all the time.

As far as linux not being ready for prime time, you may be right. It's probably not suitable for the computer illiterate or die-hard gamers. That being said, it doesn't take a great amount of knowledge to get started, and it does definitely provide for a fully functional desktop OS.

We'll never agree on this matter, there's nothing I can say that'll change your mind, and there's probably nothing that you can say to change my mind, since I'm a fucking OSS zealot. Know this though, from my experience, Linux has just sort of “worked” for me, and it's all I need to get shit done.




It's not that it's daunting, it's that like GIMP, it's TERRIBLE. I didn't say you can't do shit in it, I'm just saying that it is going to make it require 3x as much work to do anything in it. And yeah, if you're going to talk interfaces, Maya maaaay not be your best bet there.

Also, as for linux being really easy to set up, sure. As long as your graphics card falls into the ones with proper support. I spend around 45 minutes mucking around in xorg.conf just to get my graphics card and monitor to work in Ubuntu. Getting compiz to work was even MORE fun. Calling linux “fully functional” is like calling reactOS a decent windows replacement.
Official DrunkDuck curmudgeon
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:53AM
gigatwo at 7:09PM, April 27, 2008
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anonymousposterchild
It's not that it's daunting, it's that like GIMP, it's TERRIBLE. I didn't say you can't do shit in it, I'm just saying that it is going to make it require 3x as much work to do anything in it. And yeah, if you're going to talk interfaces, Maya maaaay not be your best bet there.

Also, as for linux being really easy to set up, sure. As long as your graphics card falls into the ones with proper support. I spend around 45 minutes mucking around in xorg.conf just to get my graphics card and monitor to work in Ubuntu. Getting compiz to work was even MORE fun. Calling linux “fully functional” is like calling reactOS a decent windows replacement.

Meh, I guess there's an advantage in sticking to nvidia and ATi for graphics hardware. The only time I had to mess with xorg.conf was when I was configuring my tablet. Pretty much everything worked out of the nonexistent box for me. (including compiz-fusion) It usually ends up being a good idea to install the distro after you've checked to see if your hardware is compatible. I also never stated that the actual setup was easy (though it was for me) I just said that it doesn't require a great deal of knowledge in order to get started. You just have to know what's inside your box, and how to ask questions on a forum (or search for anwsers on said forum). Most of just ends up being copy and pasting a few lines of code into the terminal or into your config file. IRC chatrooms work wonders, too.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:36PM
anonymousposterchild at 7:15PM, April 27, 2008
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gigatwo
anonymousposterchild
It's not that it's daunting, it's that like GIMP, it's TERRIBLE. I didn't say you can't do shit in it, I'm just saying that it is going to make it require 3x as much work to do anything in it. And yeah, if you're going to talk interfaces, Maya maaaay not be your best bet there.

Also, as for linux being really easy to set up, sure. As long as your graphics card falls into the ones with proper support. I spend around 45 minutes mucking around in xorg.conf just to get my graphics card and monitor to work in Ubuntu. Getting compiz to work was even MORE fun. Calling linux “fully functional” is like calling reactOS a decent windows replacement.

Meh, I guess there's an advantage in sticking to nvidia and ATi for graphics hardware. The only time I had to mess with xorg.conf was when I was configuring my tablet. Pretty much everything worked out of the nonexistent box for me. (including compiz-fusion) It usually ends up being a good idea to install the distro after you've checked to see if your hardware is compatible. I also never stated that the actual setup was easy (though it was for me) I just said that it doesn't require a great deal of knowledge in order to get started. You just have to know what's inside your box, and how to ask questions on a forum (or search for anwsers on said forum). Most of just ends up being copy and pasting a few lines of code into the terminal or into your config file. IRC chatrooms work wonders, too.

I was using an ATi onboard card. Don't even get me started on tablets though, jesus christ, that was fun. Even after consulting 4 different people, pressure sensitivity didn't work.

And don't assume I don't know anything about this stuff, the fact is that some things in linux just don't work. Also, ubuntu seemed to enjoy randomly deleting crap for some reason. I spent a good deal of my time making sure my sound would still be there on the next boot.
Official DrunkDuck curmudgeon
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:53AM
gigatwo at 7:20PM, April 27, 2008
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I'm not gonna lie, you do seem to know what you're talking about. To be honest, I just like to argue. You made my day.

I was basing my arguments off of my own experiences, and those of my friends. Of course, that's not always an effective means of making points, so I'll just say that you win.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:36PM
anonymousposterchild at 7:33PM, April 27, 2008
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gigatwo
I'm not gonna lie, you do seem to know what you're talking about. To be honest, I just like to argue. You made my day.

I was basing my arguments off of my own experiences, and those of my friends. Of course, that's not always an effective means of making points, so I'll just say that you win.

I'll argue YOU.

Oh… I won.

Well… flash in opera still sucks in linux :C
Official DrunkDuck curmudgeon
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:53AM
gigatwo at 7:51PM, April 27, 2008
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Meh, I like FF, but that's because I've never tried opera.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:36PM
anonymousposterchild at 8:07PM, April 27, 2008
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gigatwo
Meh, I like FF, but that's because I've never tried opera.

For some reason Firefox in linux trades off excessive memory usage from the windows version for excessive CPU usage. Opera always treated me right.
Official DrunkDuck curmudgeon
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:53AM
killersteak at 9:49PM, April 27, 2008
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Hmm, so how about them laptops, eh?
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:15PM
imshard at 10:24PM, April 27, 2008
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killersteak
Hmm, so how about them laptops, eh?

get one,you won't regret it.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 12:58PM
dueeast at 8:56AM, April 28, 2008
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I agree. Get one, get a Dell laptop. I did. However, since you are most likely going to get MS Vista, do not skimp on RAM. Get at least 2 GB of RAM. Do not get a Celeron or Sempron processor or you will regret it while they choke on Vista's normal workload demands. Also, get all new software, don't try to install old software…Vista doesn't like it, period. Really. Too many of my friends and coworkers have inundated me with stories, so I didn't bother when I got the laptop. It's treated me well ever since. I loaded up mine with a 256 MB Nvidia Go graphics card. The only thing I skimped on was hard drive space - only 80 GB - because most of what I do is online anyway.

Of, and don't get Vista Basic. It's not pretty enough. lol!
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:18PM
SpANG at 10:22AM, April 28, 2008
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The question is do you NEED a laptop, or do you just WANT one?

As a college student, is it required?

I have a laptop, but I wouldn't EVER think of using it as my MAIN computer. Like mostly everybody here, I run memory-hogging apps like Photoshop and Illustrator. I also do a large amount of audio stuff, too. Not to mention gaming, voip, etc. Although my laptop is “good in a pinch” for these sort of things, it's always slower and more tedious to use it for anything big.

Laptops are great for portability, if you need that sort of thing. If you do your work in one place, then save your money and get a desktop for the same price that probably has 3 times the performance. The fact of the matter is that the very best laptop is always at least a generation or two behind the very best Desktop.

You never said anything about needing portability, so my suggestion is get a desktop. If you don't have a desk, you can buy one with the money you save. or get a really cheap used laptop for taking notes in class. You can always transfer that to your main comp. ;)


And don't worry about the Vista nay-sayers. A lot of them are the same people that hated XP when it first came out and shouted “I want my Windows 98 back!”. The early adopters always have issues.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 3:53PM
crazyninny at 1:57PM, April 28, 2008
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Its more of a wanted need than a needed want.

I'm still using the family computer, which is a real pain. I can't load any new programs on this thing or else it'll have a heart attack, and there's really no more space to load any programs I want to load.
I really want a laptop to that I can load programs to enhance my art works, and to make my webcomic even better. But I also need it for when I got to college.
Other than internet surfing and watching vid.s online, that's pretty much all I need a laptop for. @_@
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:49AM
imshard at 3:03PM, April 28, 2008
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crazyninny
Its more of a wanted need than a needed want.

I'm still using the family computer, which is a real pain. I can't load any new programs on this thing or else it'll have a heart attack, and there's really no more space to load any programs I want to load.
I really want a laptop to that I can load programs to enhance my art works, and to make my webcomic even better. But I also need it for when I got to college.
Other than internet surfing and watching vid.s online, that's pretty much all I need a laptop for. @_@

Well there are some beefy laptops available that could do your artwork, or game. Almost any computer you find would surf and watch vids pretty well though. May as well go cheap there if you don't need many intensive apps.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 12:58PM
Red Slayer at 10:46PM, April 28, 2008
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crazyninny
Its more of a wanted need than a needed want.

I'm still using the family computer, which is a real pain. I can't load any new programs on this thing or else it'll have a heart attack, and there's really no more space to load any programs I want to load.
I really want a laptop to that I can load programs to enhance my art works, and to make my webcomic even better. But I also need it for when I got to college.
Other than internet surfing and watching vid.s online, that's pretty much all I need a laptop for. @_@
If you plan to study something related to graphical arts or law, believe me you WILL need your own computer.

I recommend getting a laptop, since it will allow you carry and modify your work on the go when needed.
Also if you need some advice, you can easily show your teacher or classmates what's the problem and get the feedback you need.

Amongst many other etceteras.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:03PM
kyupol at 6:34AM, April 29, 2008
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I prefer laptops because I prefer something to keep moving around. Its much easier than a desktop.

For games, (I'm the occasional gamer. I dont play much games like I used to.) I use my desktop which is 3 years old. But it runs games like Half Life 2 pretty decently.

If I run HL2 on my laptop, it is just very laggy and it makes it heat up faster.
NOW UPDATING!!!
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:26PM

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